Grade the trade: Pistons get value in proposed deal with Grizzlies
Of all of the trade proposals for Bogdanovic that I have seen, this one probably comes closest to getting what the Pistons want while still remaining realistic.
Not only would Detroit be getting the first-round pick they are after (albeit likely a late first rounder) but they get two players they could potentially plug into their rotation right away.
Both Clarke and Williams are long forwards with defensive upside who can play either forward position. This would give Detroit more depth at power forward as well as the wing, and in the case of Williams, he is still just 21-years-old, so he could develop into a very good two-way wing in the future.
Clarke is coming off a major injury, which could be a concern, but when healthy, he can play either forward position and even some small-ball center. Lengthy forwards who can defend the perimeter and interior are valuable commodities in the modern NBA and it’s been ages since the Pistons had a good one. They hope the drought is over with the selection of Ausar Thompson, but this would give them more depth at arguably the NBA’s most important position.
It would also give the Pistons the chance to immediately pivot towards the future and put Thompson in the starting lineup.
Neither Clarke nor Williams can shoot the 3-ball at all, as both were well under 30 percent last season and Clarke barely takes any.
The Pistons would have to be confident that veterans Joe Harris, Monte Morris and Alec Burks could fill the gaping 3-point absence left by Bogdaovic’s departure. The Pistons were already a bad shooting team and this would be replacing their best shooter with two guys who can’t shoot from long range.
Williams has shown some potential, as he did shoot 31 percent in his rookie season before falling off last year in a lesser role. But he is still just 21, so it’s not unreasonable to think his shot will improve with more reps and a more defined role.
This deal would make the Pistons younger, more athletic and better defensively, so if they truly want to build around a defense, this would be a way to bolster that strategy. But it would come at the cost of their already-terrible shooting, so there is some downside.
But when you factor the first-round pick as a sweetener, this deal looks good for Detroit, as it would also give them more ammo and contracts to make a big trade for a star in the future.